Moon of Alabama Brecht quote
January 03, 2013

Another Year, Another U.S. War Crime

The premier Pakistani newspaper Dawn reports today of two separate drone attacks by U.S. forces against targets in Pakistan:
In the attack in South Waziristan, an unmanned drone fired two missiles at a vehicle killing six people in the Sar Kanda area of Birmil in Pakistan’s northwestern tribal district of South Waziristan.

While talking to Dawn.com, local Taliban and intelligence sources confirmed the killing of pro-government and anti-US Taliban commander Mullah Nazir along with five of his companions near Wana.

One might concede that such a drone strike could be legal because the Pakistani government seems to condone these and has done nothing to prevent them. But there was another drone strike today and that one was, independent of the Pakistani government's stand, blandly illegal and constitutes a war crime:
Separately, four people were killed and several others injured in a drone attack in the Mubarak Shahi village in North Waziristan tribal region’s Mir Ali Tehsil.

The US drone targeted a vehicle with two missiles, and then fired another two missiles when rescuers gathered at the site to carry the bodies and the injured.

Such an attack on first responders have happened before and are, even by U.S. military standards, explicitly designated as being against the law of war.

Consider this from the MARINE CORPS COMMON SKILLS HANDBOOK (pdf, pg 21)

The nine principles of the law of war are

· Fight only enemy combatants.
· Do not harm enemies who surrender: disarm them and turn them over to your superior.
· Do not kill or torture prisoners.
· Collect and care for the wounded, whether friend or foe.
· Do not attack medical personnel, facilities, or equipment.
· Do not destroy more than the mission requires.
· Do not steal; respect private property and possessions.
· Do your best to prevent violations of the law of war; report all violations to your superiors, a military lawyer, a chaplain, or provost marshal.

An attack on first responders is clearly a violation of the three highlighted points.

"Who cares," one might think. With U.S. justice keeping even the legal rational for assassinating U.S. citizens secret, there is no chance that those who committed this war crime by ordering and/or executing the killing of first responders will ever be found guilty in front of a court.

But even then, the Marines' manual argues, the consequences of such war crimes can be dire:

Violations of the law of war have an adverse impact on public opinion, both nationally and internationally. Instead of weakening the enemy's will to fight, such violations actually strengthen it. In fact, they have, on occasion, served to prolong a conflict by inciting an opponent to continue resistance. Violations of these principles prejudice the good order and discipline essential to success in combat.
The U.S. military knows that such attacks on first responders strengthen the enemy and prolong the conflict. Knowing that are we to conclude that this was the purpose of this attack?

Posted by b on January 3, 2013 at 01:09 PM | Permalink

Comments

Mullah Nazir, the Taliban commander killed, was considered by Pakistan to be part of the "good Taliban" who could be negotiated with. In fact he negotiated peace deals with the Pakistani government several times. Strangely this drone strike comes 5 weeks after someone tried to assassinate him via suicide bomber.

A teen-aged suicide bomber drove a motorcycle packed with explosives into Nazir's car as it was parked in the main bazaar in Wana in South Waziristan, a Pakistani official told The New York Times. Nazir was purportedly out of the car and making a phone call when the attack took place.

Source: Long War Journal

On other Pakistani news this comes as foreign minister Hina Rabbani Khar is visiting Saudi Arabia. Former Ambassador, MK Bradrakumar had this to say on the Saudi-Pakistani alliance becoming stronger.

The underpinnings of the Saudi-Pakistani partnership in the Hindu Kush are strikingly the same as twenty years ago — injecting Islamism as the leitmotif of politics in Afghanistan; envisaging the role of an Islamist regime in Kabul in regional politics; using Salafism to threaten Shi’ite Iran and so on. Clearly, this latest Saudi-Pakistani enterprise enjoys American backing.
But it has a raison d’etre of its own. The point is, a wide-ranging Saudi-Pakistani regional partnership is surfacing. Pakistani ‘volunteers’ are reportedly fighting in Syria at present. They enjoy Saudi-Qatari funding and military assistance and are the foot soldiers of the campaign for ‘regime change’ in Damascus, which the US and its Arab allies expound.

Posted by: Colm O' Toole | Jan 3, 2013 2:18:51 PM | 1

"With U.S. justice keeping even the legal rational for assassinating U.S. citizens secret,...". The secret has to be kept because there is no legal rational for straight out murder.

Posted by: JohnE | Jan 3, 2013 2:20:23 PM | 2

Mullah Nazir, the Taliban commander killed today, was considered by Pakistan to be part of the "good Taliban". He had negotiated some past peace deals with the Pakistani military. Strangely enough five weeks ago someone tried to assassinate him via suicide bomber.

A teen-aged suicide bomber drove a motorcycle packed with explosives into Nazir's car as it was parked in the main bazaar in Wana in South Waziristan, a Pakistani official told The New York Times. Nazir was purportedly out of the car and making a phone call when the attack took place.

Source: Long War Journal

Looks like the US succeeded in killing him where the suicide bomber had failed at the end of November. Makes you wonder who tipped off the US to his location...

On other Pakistani news, Foreign Minister Hina Rabbani Khar, is currently visiting Saudi Arabia while all this is going on. Former Ambassador MK Bradrakumar talks about how both sides are strenghtening their alliance

The underpinnings of the Saudi-Pakistani partnership in the Hindu Kush are strikingly the same as twenty years ago — injecting Islamism as the leitmotif of politics in Afghanistan; envisaging the role of an Islamist regime in Kabul in regional politics; using Salafism to threaten Shi’ite Iran and so on. Clearly, this latest Saudi-Pakistani enterprise enjoys American backing.
But it has a raison d’etre of its own. The point is, a wide-ranging Saudi-Pakistani regional partnership is surfacing. Pakistani ‘volunteers’ are reportedly fighting in Syria at present. They enjoy Saudi-Qatari funding and military assistance and are the foot soldiers of the campaign for ‘regime change’ in Damascus, which the US and its Arab allies expound.

Posted by: Colm O' Toole | Jan 3, 2013 2:30:18 PM | 3

"Makes you wonder who tipped off the US to his location..."

It actually made me wonder "just who sent the suicide bomber in the first place?" - seems more likely to me that when they could not get him after sending a deniable proxy to do the job, they decided to carry out the hit themselves

Posted by: Facts? | Jan 3, 2013 2:54:02 PM | 4

@ Facts?

Certainly strange alright. My guess would be the Pakistani Taliban, Tehrik i Taliban Pakistan, served as the deniable proxy. The Long War Journal piece mentions that Mullah Nazir only fought on the Afghan side of the border and was opposed to overthrowing the Pakistani state. Could have been reason enough for the Pakistani Taliban to want him dead. There headquarters are also in South Waziristan where both attempts were made.

Posted by: Colm O' Toole | Jan 3, 2013 3:13:03 PM | 5

"The U.S. military knows that such attacks on first responders strengthen the enemy and prolong the conflict. Knowing that are we to conclude that this was the purpose of this attack"

Yes. Israel-America's goals in Central Asia require that Afghanistan remains open to their forces, military, organised crime and their intelligence operatives spreading covert wars. This requires the country to be kept destabilised. A similar policy is practiced against Iraq to keep that country destabilised.

It also makes it easier for the Israeli-American "Khalid Amayreh" type recruiters to dupe people with their sectarian poison, which is packaged along with the anti-Israel and America sales pitches used to recruit these people into "al Qaida" cells.

Posted by: вот так | Jan 3, 2013 4:49:44 PM | 6

"Knowing that are we to conclude that this was the purpose of this attack?"

Of course. Somebody needs to be the enemy in order for the U.S. military and "intelligence" departments to keep the tax dollars flowing into their pockets.

Posted by: Kanzanian | Jan 3, 2013 4:51:30 PM | 7

2

"Mullah Nazir, the Taliban commander killed today, was considered by Pakistan to be part of the "good Taliban". He had negotiated some past peace deals with the Pakistani military."

Like the Palestinian military leader who was negotiating peace the Israelis assassinated at the start of their recent attack on Gaza. These people are murdered specifically because they are willing to compromise and negotiate. Israel-America wants these places unstable and killing moderates while promoting extremists serves their NWO purposes there.

Posted by: вот так | Jan 3, 2013 4:54:48 PM | 8

This might be of interest: Syrian Contradictions - Many Conflicts Rolled Into One

Posted by: Daniel Rich | Jan 3, 2013 9:21:58 PM | 9

The purpose of this attack, like so many others, is to instill terror among the people of the area. Knowing there are no limits to what our military will do, is seen as the ultimate message to our "enemies". The U.S. is a very sick society.

Posted by: ben | Jan 3, 2013 10:19:11 PM | 10

Kinda lends the lie to the 'ol "They hate us because of our freedoms" horseshit, doesn't it?

Actually, they hate us because we deserve to be hated by them.

Pretty much paints a true picture of this lying P.O.S. fraud we have as a President, as well, eh?

Posted by: PissedOffAmerican | Jan 3, 2013 10:51:14 PM | 11

POA says: "Actually, they hate us because we deserve to be hated by them."

Yep, simple. Don't ya wish someone, anyone, would mention that on corporate media?
The ensuing rhetorical firestorm would be a joy to behold.

Posted by: ben | Jan 4, 2013 9:43:39 AM | 12

ben@11 I find that a more productive thing to say, when the chance comes, is that they hate us because of what we are doing/have done. And mention a few things...

Conversations sometimes come!

Posted by: lambent1 | Jan 4, 2013 9:54:37 AM | 13

@ 12: How about Libya,Syria, Iran, Argentina, Vietnam. Enough?

Posted by: ben | Jan 4, 2013 11:30:34 AM | 14

The attacks on first responders are conscious attempts to intimidate the whole population of the country under attack. Their brutal message is "The Masters of the Earth decree 'If you thwart our will, by giving succour to our "enemies", then you become an enemy too, and are condemned to death'".

Now this is the same as saying that we will kill anyone whose existence we find to be inconvenient; and that is the logic of a gangster. And when the regimes that tolerate these violations of their sovereignty are swept away, what will we do then?

Posted by: despard | Jan 4, 2013 11:59:40 AM | 15

@ 12: This may help,http://www.amazon.com/The-Ruses-War-American-Interventionism/dp/1591025168

Posted by: ben | Jan 4, 2013 12:03:21 PM | 16

14

"and that is the logic of a gangster"

The west is run by gangsters. Pampered, privileged by birth and cowardly, yes, and looking more like bloated, corrupt, inbred royalty, than you're usual suited, tommy gun toting Chicago boy, but their world view is that of gangsters and brigands and that is how they have their minions operate.

Posted by: вот так | Jan 4, 2013 12:16:50 PM | 17

Illegal Occupation of Iraq: US-UK Crimes against Humanity

http://www.globalresearch.ca/illegal-occupation-of-iraq-us-uk-crimes-against-humanity/5317723

"In the light of the fact that it transpires that twenty seven Foreign Office lawyers concluded unanimously that the Iraq invasion of Iraq was illegal I write to draw your attention to just a few of the the chilling events currently taking place in Iraq under the US-UK’s despotic, imposed, puppet Prime Minister.

Firstly, here is a list of prisons, detention facilities, interrogation centres and numbers of those held in each, as far as can be ascertained in the circumstances. As you will surely know people are routinely arbitrarily detained for weeks, months, even years, often without trial, and with one, usually under a totally inadequate or corrupt legal system.

On 3rd January 2013, Nuri al-Maliki carried out the death sentence on Ahmed al-Samarrai and two other men from Mosul, on charges of his resisting the U.S. and Iran occupation. Resisting an unlawful occupation is, of course, a legal right. His body was not delivered to his family; a funeral will take place in his honor, in gatherings, in Anbar and elsewhere in Iraq. (Should you question the US occupation since they “pulled out” last December, just see the Vatican City size US embassy and its thousands of mercenaries, intelligence operators and nefarious other spooks and enforcers.)..."

Posted by: вот так | Jan 4, 2013 12:59:25 PM | 18

ben, most people are so sheltered from hard facts that simply saying e.g.'Syria' would convey nothing. I enjoy reading antiwar.com for details of unpopular news.
McKinley seems to have begun US imperialism by using the Spanish American war, started by blaming the mysterious explosion of the battleship Maine in Cuba on the Spaniards, as an excuse for invading the Philippines because they were also Spanish colonies. We killed lots of people over a long time there and finally got control of their islands.
And then are/were the Indians...
Thank you for your attention - we are on the same side!

Posted by: lambent1 | Jan 4, 2013 6:05:13 PM | 19

side notes: Iranians in Latin America spook US What country could be behind that foreign US policy?

Will the FSA beheaders be able to feed, clothe and house all the masses they've 'liberated?'

Posted by: Daniel Rich | Jan 4, 2013 6:09:49 PM | 20

has anyone like the pakistani govt or Amnesty brought charges against the US regime? demand ICC take action?
NO?

Posted by: brian | Jan 4, 2013 6:32:48 PM | 21

so what could Pakistan do?
I mean if Pakistan wanted the US to stop, they could threaten to give Iran nukes... stop US supplies into Afghanistan...

but can Pakistan stop the US without a drastic measure? if they told the US to respect its borders, would they be able to shot down or make it not worth it for the US to attempt "targeted killings"?

Posted by: Simon | Jan 4, 2013 6:59:08 PM | 22

@20 "has anyone like the pakistani govt or Amnesty brought charges against the US regime? demand ICC take action?
NO?"

Amnesty is US-run organization, ICC exclusively serve the interests of US and their alies, there isnt much what can anyone legally do. Cutting ties with the US and joining the "dark side" is pretty much the only thing Pakistan (or anyone else) can do, and thats probably not an option for them.

Due to Pakistan's weak leadership and economy, diverse society, US could organize "Syria/Libya's solution" so fast, that heads would spin. Balochistan would be "liberated" too. Syria with a stronger leadership and more monolithic society would look like stronghold in this case.

Posted by: Harry | Jan 4, 2013 7:07:22 PM | 23

@20 Amnesty? That was tongue-in-cheek, yes?

Posted by: DM | Jan 4, 2013 7:17:56 PM | 24


hitting civilians n ambusing first responders is standard fukus m.o. since days immorial

exhibit 1001
*I now ask you, General
- Was it your son whose bombs hit a bridge in central Serbia
crowded with traffic and pedestrians on a Sunday afternoon,
where 17 people were wounded and nine people died, including "a priest with his head blasted away?" (Reuters, 30 May). Or
was it your son who, four minutes after the initial attack, hit the bridge again just as help arrived for the surviving victims?*
http://home.windstream.net/dwrighsr/a3820cf4d2861.html


General Michael Short, usaf
*If you wake up in the morning and you have no power to your house and no gas to your stove and the bridge you take to work is down and will be lying in the Danube for the next 20 years, I think you begin to ask, 'Hey, Slobo, what's this all about? How much more of this do we have to withstand?*
http://www.swans.com/library/art7/gowans14.html
[Message: Dump Slobo and the bombing stops]


British Chief of Defence [sic] Staff Admiral Michael Boyce.
*my country and the US would continue to bomb Afghanistan "until the people of the country themselves recognize that this is going to go on until they get the leadership changed.*


Paul Wolfowitz
*the bombing was helpful for exploiting "fault lines" in Falluja, it would push the "citizenry" of Falluja to deny sanctuary and assistance to the insurgents,that’s a good thing.*
http://www.counterpunch.org/2004/11/05/war-crimes-and-iraq/
[to *suck the pond dry*, ala nam]

from kosovo [the crime didnt start there by a long shot, but its where my *career* was launched], to afghan, iraq, libya, syria.......

a serial rapist/murderer is running amok,
we know the crimes, the criminal, his address, his schedule n next targets, we've the evidence, right out of the horse mouth.
even the criminal's every move is studied n *analysised* in detail, op eds were written by the volumnes, the crimes were recorded by camera.
the only missing link in this epic crime spree ......where's the ourtage , where'r the cops ?

Posted by: denk | Jan 4, 2013 9:50:25 PM | 25

Could these be the folks calling the shots worldwide? Food for thought.

http://www.alternet.org/world/no-conspiracy-theory-small-group-companies-have-enormous-power-over-world

Posted by: ben | Jan 4, 2013 10:12:40 PM | 26

25

From Marshall's article:

“An analysis of the relationships between 43,000 transnational corporations has identified a relatively small group of companies, mainly banks, with disproportionate power over the global economy.”

Yeah, I expected that. But then he went and showed how and why. I wasn't expecting that. Great analysis - thanks for posting it.

Posted by: вот так | Jan 5, 2013 12:05:53 AM | 27

14)
"Now this is the same as saying that we will kill anyone whose existence we find to be inconvenient; and that is the logic of a gangster. And when the regimes that tolerate these violations of their sovereignty are swept away, what will we do then?"

That nails it. And like all criminal behaviour it is disfunctional.

Posted by: somebody | Jan 5, 2013 2:35:43 AM | 28

bush I
*the gitmo inmates are the most dangerous , highly trained
terrarists*

which begs the question, *why did bush let the most dangerous
mehsud go after a brief sojorn in gitmo, even when the aussie taliban david hicks remained languishing in the hellhole
,inspite of pleading from buddy howard *?
mehsud supposedly hated the fukusans guts, so why'd his first
mission after release be kidnapping n killing chinese engineers
working on the gwada project ?
what did they do to him in gimo besides waterboarding... mk-ultra ?

whatever, hundreds of chinese engineers, workers, even a lady
tourist have been slained by the cia/raw sponsored ttp, the mega
gwadar project is kaput.
*chinese out, fukus in*, mission accomoplished.

murders in broad daylight by known killers, before our very eyes.
brought to u..... by the *war on terrarism* crusaders.

http://www.thenews.com.pk/Todays-News-9-111279-CIAs-misadventures

http://tinyurl.com/97lp7yv

Posted by: denk | Jan 6, 2013 1:21:11 AM | 30

Talking about Yankee war crimes, I stumbled on this very thorough anti-Imperialist YouTube video from N Korea in the comments at Race for Iran (aka Travelling to Tehran as of 1st January 2013).

N.K. Exposes Western Propaganda
http://www.informationclearinghouse.info/article33497.htm#idc-cover

It's about 97 minutes and covers all the puerile MSM ballyhoo and bullshit we're exposed to every day including what passes for Culture, News and Entertainment, on Western TV.

The hi-light for me was the savage bollicking Oz (Australia) got for being a pathetically servile lap-dog of US-UK.

Posted by: Hoarsewhisperer | Jan 6, 2013 9:49:49 AM | 31

There is, of course, a credible hypothesis for the firing of drone missiles at rescuers i.e. that this was a drone operated by the CIA, not by any of the Armed Forces of the United States of America.

In which case it is very possible that the dude operating the joystick:
a) has never read the Marine (or Army, or Airforce) handbook on the Rules Of War
b) and he wouldn't give a rat's arse even if he had

The fact that he is in control of a Weapon Of War and is conducting a Combat Operation will be of no concern to him; he's a civvie, not a soldier, and so - if he even thinks about it at all - he will believe that he falls between the cracks.

Posted by: Johnboy | Jan 6, 2013 5:02:42 PM | 32

Ecuadorian president warns of possible 'CIA attack' before elections

http://rt.com/news/ecuado-correa-cia-attack-429/

"Ecuadorian President Rafael Correa has said the CIA may try to kill him prior to upcoming elections. Citing reports of a plot to “destabilize the region,” Correa said the threats were “credible,” given the history of US involvement in Latin America.

Correa alluded to reports by Chilean journalist Patricio Mery Bell, who allegedly passed on information to the Ecuadorian government that President Correa’s life was “under threat” by a CIA plot.

Bell first voiced his concerns for the safety of President Correa three months ago when he released a report claiming the CIA sought to “destabilize” Ecuador. He said that the threat to Correa’s life would be at its height from January 15 and onwards, as Correa applies to run for another presidential term.

“We will have to be three times more vigilant with President Correa,” Bell said in an interview with publication El Ciudadano. Bell maintained that although he was not a staunch supporter of Correa, it was his duty as a Latin American citizen to warn of the alleged $88-million CIA plot to destabilize the Ecuadorian government.

The journalist believes that this money will be divided amongst extremist anarchist, leftist and hardline conservative groups, in the hopes of discrediting Correas.

Bell claimed in his report that the main motives behind the CIA plot were the closing of the US Manta military base, hailed as a victory for Ecuadorian national sovereignty, and the granting of asylum to WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange.

President Correa is often described as echoing the policies of Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez, especially in anti-US rhetoric. The 49-year-old economist has reduced poverty and increased stability and the overall standard of living in Ecuador during his presidency, winning popularity amongst the country’s poorest as well as the educated middle class.

Correa will run for reelection against six other candidates when campaigning begins on January 15. Ecuadorians will vote for the next president and vice president on Sunday, February 17."

Posted by: вот так | Jan 6, 2013 5:04:05 PM | 33

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